Skip to Content

Your Freedom to Disinherit in Michigan


Inheritance laws vary based on state, and disinheritance regulations differ accordingly. When considering disinheritance – which refers to intentionally barring someone from receiving their inheritance – specific considerations and rules must be considered.

This article seeks to illuminate this topic by discussing who can legally be disinherited in Michigan and the legal processes that must take place for it to occur successfully.

Principle of Testamentary Freedom

Michigan, like most states, adheres to testamentary freedom as an ideal. This gives individuals the right to determine how their assets will be divided after death – including disinheriting someone. But keep in mind there may be certain restrictions or exceptions.

Spouse’s Rights

Michigan grants spouses certain protections that prevent complete disinheritance upon the death of one partner, precisely an “elective share,” which typically amounts to about one-third of an estate belonging to their deceased loved one, to ensure their surviving partner will still receive adequate provision even if not named explicitly in a will. This elective share helps guarantee they remain provided for even without being specifically included.

Note, however, that if a valid prenuptial or postnuptial agreement were to be executed waiving any right to elective share inheritance, they could effectively disinherit themselves from it. Such documents should be prepared with legal assistance to guarantee their legality and avoid legal complications later.

Children’s Rights 

In Michigan, children do not typically inherit automatically from their parents; it’s essential to differentiate between minor and adult offspring when considering potential inheritance rights.

Minor children are entitled to support and maintenance from both of their parents, even after one dies; it remains their legal responsibility to care for these little children even after death, so disinheritance of a minor child may not have the desired effect as courts could intervene to ensure his/her well-being.

Parents do not automatically inherit adult children in their wills. Instead, parents can disinherit their adult children through will provisions. However, it would be prudent to consult an attorney to draft and execute it appropriately to prevent future disputes and legal challenges.

Other Beneficiaries

Michigan law permits disinheritance against anyone other than spouses or their offspring, such as siblings, parents, and friends, as long as specific statutory protections, such as being the surviving spouse, exist.

Disinheriting someone does not ensure they will not challenge your will or seek an inheritance share from your estate; indeed, disinheritance could increase the chance of legal complications; therefore, it’s essential to consult an attorney beforehand to draft your will carefully and meet all legal requirements.

Legal Considerations and Professional Advice 

Seek professional assistance

Disinheriting someone requires careful thought and assistance from an experienced estate planning attorney. Legal professionals can guide you through this complex process, help explain its potential repercussions and document all your wishes for future reference.

You must create an estate plan which communicates your intentions, addresses potential hurdles, and minimizes legal disputes. By consulting an advisor about Michigan inheritance laws, you can successfully navigate them while making wise decisions regarding who inherits what.

Michigan residents are generally free to disinherit someone in their wills, with some exceptions. Spouses and minor children have legal protections that prevent complete disinheritance, while adult children or beneficiaries can still be disinherited, provided the appropriate legal procedures are followed. Nonetheless, disinheriting someone could bring legal challenges, so seeking advice from an estate planning attorney might be best to avoid conflicts.

Let Haque Legal Help You With Your Case

If you require a lawyer who can assist you with ensuring that you protect your rights, it is essential to know that you also have a team that can help you with your specific needs. 

Our law firm is dedicated to ensuring that the law will protect the innocent and that the full extent of justice will be used.


The article you read is based on general applications of the law. It is not legal advice and should not be construed as any legal consultation with the firm. No client-attorney relationship is created when you read the articles we have provided.

Let us help you out

Call us immediately if you need a Southfield family lawyer to help you during your proceedings. If you have any problem with the law or seek justice and truth, our numbers are standing by to take your call.

Share To:


Contact Our Legal Team Today
  • Please enter your first name.
  • Please enter your last name.
  • Please enter your phone number.
    This isn't a valid phone number.
  • Please enter your email address.
    This isn't a valid email address.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please enter a message.
  • By submitting, you agree to be contacted about your request & other information using automated technology. Message frequency varies. Msg & data rates may apply. Text STOP to cancel. Acceptable Use Policy